Old 01-19-2015, 06:57 PM   #1
Temujin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 6,288
Default German Aircraft Carrier Graf Zeppelin








Graf Zeppelin

German Aircraft Carrier of WW2

By Stephen Sherman, June, 2011. Updated March 1, 2012.

The Graf Zeppelin was the ultimate white elephant, a huge and expensive naval vessel that her owners (Nazi Germany) never knew what to do with, never finished, and never really wanted in the first place. While inter-service rivalries have always complicated military planning and procurement, the rivalry between the Luftwaffe and the Kriegsmarine was unmatched. Goering had not risen to be Hitler's Number Two for no reason, and the less political Admiral Raeder was out of his depth in inter-service politicking. There were endless difficulties with the carrier.

It was a ship that was filled with contradictions and compromises from the start. She was outfitted with six-inch guns that had no business on an aircraft carrier, which were ultimately sent to Norway for coastal defense. Her aircraft were half-hearted modifications of land-based planes, most of which never reached production. Her propulsion was vastly overpowered: 200,000 HP for a ship with 40 airplanes. (American Essex-class carriers of the era were rated at 150,000 HP and carried almost 100 aircraft.)

History

In 1935, Germany signed a naval treaty with Britain which permitted it to build two carriers of just under 20,000 tons each. While Germany was not a naval power like Britain, Japan, or the United States, and had no real strategic need to project naval air power, Hitler's grandiose ambitions embraced all big, new, powerful weapons, and two aircraft carriers were authorized that same year: identified as Flugzeugträger "A" and Flugzeugträger "B" (Carrier A and Carrier B), per Kriegsmarine practice of not naming ships until launching. The German contractors, Deutsche Werke Kiel A.G, had no experience with aircraft and their unique requirements like flight elevators, catapults, open hangars, etc.. They did consult with the Japanese, and were licensed flight deck equipment from the carrier Akagi.

As the Kiel shipyard was committed to building other ships, Flugzeugträger "A," was not laid down until December, 1936. Two years later, on December 8, 1938, she was launched and christened Graf Zeppelin, in honor of the great German airship pioneer. The second authorized carrier Flugzeugträger "B," never proceeded very far.

When the war started in September 1939, submarines became the priority, and while Graf Zeppelin had been launched and was 85% complete, work on her slowed. On April 29, 1940 after the occupation of Norway, Admiral Raeder re-evaluated the aircraft carrier program. He recommended to Hitler that Flugzeugträger "B" (notionally the "Peter Strasser") be abandoned and broken up. As for Graf Zeppelin, he proposed that her 6-inch guns be dispatched to Norway for use as coastal artillery. Hitler agreed. Her 4-inch anti-aircraft guns had already been re-assigned to other ships. And her fire control system was sold to the Soviet Union. There was to be no further work on the ship, which would be moved from Kiel to Gotenhafen in East Prussia (now Gdynia, Poland), where it would be less exposed to British air attacks. On July 6, 1940, in "Operation Zugvogel" (migratory bird) Graf Zeppelin was towed to the Baltic port.

For more information, click on the link below

http://acepilots.com/ships/graf-zeppelin.html

Last edited by Temujin : 01-19-2015 at 06:59 PM.
Temujin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2016, 08:19 AM   #2
Temujin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 6,288
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Temujin View Post









Graf Zeppelin

German Aircraft Carrier of WW2

By Stephen Sherman, June, 2011. Updated March 1, 2012.

The Graf Zeppelin was the ultimate white elephant, a huge and expensive naval vessel that her owners (Nazi Germany) never knew what to do with, never finished, and never really wanted in the first place. While inter-service rivalries have always complicated military planning and procurement, the rivalry between the Luftwaffe and the Kriegsmarine was unmatched. Goering had not risen to be Hitler's Number Two for no reason, and the less political Admiral Raeder was out of his depth in inter-service politicking. There were endless difficulties with the carrier.

It was a ship that was filled with contradictions and compromises from the start. She was outfitted with six-inch guns that had no business on an aircraft carrier, which were ultimately sent to Norway for coastal defense. Her aircraft were half-hearted modifications of land-based planes, most of which never reached production. Her propulsion was vastly overpowered: 200,000 HP for a ship with 40 airplanes. (American Essex-class carriers of the era were rated at 150,000 HP and carried almost 100 aircraft.)

History

In 1935, Germany signed a naval treaty with Britain which permitted it to build two carriers of just under 20,000 tons each. While Germany was not a naval power like Britain, Japan, or the United States, and had no real strategic need to project naval air power, Hitler's grandiose ambitions embraced all big, new, powerful weapons, and two aircraft carriers were authorized that same year: identified as Flugzeugträger "A" and Flugzeugträger "B" (Carrier A and Carrier B), per Kriegsmarine practice of not naming ships until launching. The German contractors, Deutsche Werke Kiel A.G, had no experience with aircraft and their unique requirements like flight elevators, catapults, open hangars, etc.. They did consult with the Japanese, and were licensed flight deck equipment from the carrier Akagi.

As the Kiel shipyard was committed to building other ships, Flugzeugträger "A," was not laid down until December, 1936. Two years later, on December 8, 1938, she was launched and christened Graf Zeppelin, in honor of the great German airship pioneer. The second authorized carrier Flugzeugträger "B," never proceeded very far.

When the war started in September 1939, submarines became the priority, and while Graf Zeppelin had been launched and was 85% complete, work on her slowed. On April 29, 1940 after the occupation of Norway, Admiral Raeder re-evaluated the aircraft carrier program. He recommended to Hitler that Flugzeugträger "B" (notionally the "Peter Strasser") be abandoned and broken up. As for Graf Zeppelin, he proposed that her 6-inch guns be dispatched to Norway for use as coastal artillery. Hitler agreed. Her 4-inch anti-aircraft guns had already been re-assigned to other ships. And her fire control system was sold to the Soviet Union. There was to be no further work on the ship, which would be moved from Kiel to Gotenhafen in East Prussia (now Gdynia, Poland), where it would be less exposed to British air attacks. On July 6, 1940, in "Operation Zugvogel" (migratory bird) Graf Zeppelin was towed to the Baltic port.

For more information, click on the link below

http://acepilots.com/ships/graf-zeppelin.html
Updates photo locations

Last edited by Temujin : 12-30-2016 at 08:36 AM.
Temujin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2016, 08:29 AM   #3
Temujin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 6,288
Default



Hitler had promised the German Navy (The Kriegsmarine) carriers as early as 1935, and the keel was laid for the Graf Zepplin on December 26, 1936. The Graf Zeppelin was 920 feet long and weighed 19,250 tons. Her top speed was to be 33.8 knots. Her crew complement was 1,760 and she was to hangar forty aircraft. By comparison the large American Essex class carriers of WWII could carry 80 to 100 aircraft. The Germans got as far as partly installing the catapults when the ship was then turned into a floating warehouse for u-boat parts.


Hitler’s attitude vacillated on the project and it never had his full backing. It also had a major detractor in Goering, who was resentful of any incursion on his authority as head of the country’s air power. Goering had been ordered by Hitler to develop aircraft for the ship. His response was to offer redesigned versions of the then-obsolete JU-87 Stuka dive bomber and older versions of the Messerschmitt 109 fighter. Both planes were land-based aircraft never intended to meet the rough requirements for carrier operations. Even after modifications they were hopelessly inferior to Allied types. To insure further delay in the carrier’s completion, Goering informed Hitler that these planes would not be ready until the end of 1944. Goering’s tactics worked and the Graf Zeppelin’s construction was halted in 1943.

By the time work stopped on the ship, the Germany Navy had a submariner as its top naval officer— Admiral Karl Donitz— and all ship construction was turned over to building new U-Boats. The Graf Zeppelin stayed at her moorings in Stettin for the rest of the war never to see action.

As the end of the war in Europe neared, the Graf Zeppelin was scuttled in shallow water off Stettin (now Szczecin in Poland) on April 25, 1945 just before the Red Army captured the city. But she wasn’t quite ready for the scrap yard yet. According to recently found material in Russian archives, the ship was refloated by the Russians and towed to Leningrad filled with captured booty and military parts for use in the Soviet Union. After unloading her cargo she was named “PO-101” (Floating Base Number 101) by the Soviets. The new owners had hoped to repair and refit the ship as a new carrier but this proved to be impractical so the Graf Zeppelin had one more task to fulfill.


On August 16, 1947 she was towed out to sea and used for target practice by Soviet ships and aircraft. Aerial bombs were placed in her hangers, flight deck and smoke stack. Planes and ships then shot shells and dropped bombs on her to demonstrate how to sink a carrier, presumably American. After twenty-four hits the Graf Zeppelin stayed afloat and had to be finished off by torpedoes.

https://www.damninteresting.com/the-...craft-carrier/

Graf Zeppelin

Namesake: Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin
Builder: Deutsche Werke
Laid down: 28 December 1936
Launched: 8 December 1938
Fate: Sunk as a target ship on 16 August 1947

General characteristics

Class and type: Graf Zeppelin-class aircraft carrier
Displacement: 33,550 long tons (34,088.4 t)
Length: 262.5 m (861 ft 2.6 in)
Beam: 36.2 m (118 ft 9.2 in)
Draft: 8.5 m (27 ft 10.6 in)
Installed power: 200,000 shaft horsepower (149,140.0 kW)
Propulsion: 4 geared turbines
Speed: 33.8 kn (62.6 km/h; 38.9 mph)
Range: 8,000 nmi (14,816.0 km; 9,206.2 mi) at 19 kn (35.2 km/h; 21.9 mph)
Complement: 1,720

Armament:
16 × 15 cm SK C/28 guns
12 × 10.5 cm SK C/33 guns
22 × 3.7 cm SK C/30 guns
28 × 2 cm FlaK guns

Armor:
Belt: 100 mm (3.9 in)
Flight deck: 45 mm (1.8 in)
Main deck: 60 mm (2.4 in)

Aircraft carried:
Proposed complement of 42[1]
1930 proposal: 30 fighters & 12 dive bombers
1939 proposal: 12 fighters & 30 dive bombers

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/5223514.stm

Last edited by Temujin : 12-30-2016 at 08:42 AM.
Temujin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2017, 02:32 PM   #4
Temujin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 6,288
Default







Temujin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:06 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.